Valley hockey ready for 2013-14

When it’s cold outside, that means it’s cold inside too. At least when it comes to ice hockey rinks across the state, as the 2013-14 season begins for teams in the Farmington Valley.

Farmington Valley Generals

After a lackluster 9-13 season last year, the co-op of Farmington, Avon and WIndsor should bounce back with mature leadership, speed and team chemistry in the third year of the three-team configuation.

“Potential,” Mike Barone, one of the co-coaches of the squad said, “lots of potential.”

Though they may be limited, only suiting up 25 skaters this year, they have a capable trio of captains leading the veteran squad offensively in seniors Nick Sanderson, Dan Rider and junior Connor McCutcheon.

“All are capable of putting up big numbers,” Barone said.

Three more impact players are juniors Mike Santos, Paul Tasillo and Michael Arciero, giving the Generals a solid and dynamic core to build on.

“The Farmington Valley Generals are poised to make a run at the Division II title this season,” Barone said.

Defensively, the Generals are equally talented, with senior captain Jack Wendler leading the way, and defensemen Mike Wissuchek and Alden Piper, sophomore and junior respectively, adding value at the point position.

Along with co-coach Scott Percival, Barone strongly believes this year’s team can really do some damage both in the state and in the conference.

“We are excited about the talent level and are looking forward to contending for the CCC-South title this season,” the coaches agreed.


Simsbury Trojans

The Trojans pieced together a fantastic 2012-13 season, posting a 16-6 record and advancing to the Division I quarterfinals. But a loss to eventual finals runner up Notre Dame-West Haven left a bitter taste in the team’s mouth.

This year, the squad looks to overcome the loss of nine lettermen from last year’s team.

Top returning players for the Trojans include Brian Gellman, Curt Eustis, Aaron Riccio, Nolan Thompson and James Foster.

Though a lot of experience returns with strength on defense and in the forward position, two big question marks will define the campaign for Simsbury.

“[We] lost a lot of defense , and we need to replace that,” Trojan’s head coach Thomas Cross said.

Simsbury will try to challenge a talented Glastonbury squad in the CCC.

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